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GAC to kill off .amazon

Kevin Murphy, July 16, 2013, 13:13:42 (UTC), Domain Registries

The Governmental Advisory Committee has agreed to file a consensus objection against Amazon’s application for .amazon.
The decision, which came this morning during a GAC session at the ICANN meeting in Durban, also applies to the company’s applications for .amazon in non-Latin scripts.
The objection came at the behest of Brazil and other Latin American countries that claim rights to Amazon as a geographic term, and follows failed attempts by Amazon to reach agreement.
Brazil was able to achieve consensus in the GAC because the United States, which refused to agree to the objection three months ago in Beijing, had decided to keep mum this time around.
The objection will be forwarded to the ICANN board in the GAC’s Durban communique later in the week, after which the board will have a presumption that the .amazon application should be rejected.
The board could overrule the GAC, but it seems unlikely.
It’s the second big American brand to get the GAC kiss of death after Patagonia, which withdrew its application for .patagonia last week after the US revealed its hands-off approach for Durban.
Both Amazon and Patagonia slipped through the standard Geographic Names Panel check because they’re trans-national regions, whereas the panel used lists of administrative divisions to determine whether strings were geographic.
Amazon the company was named after the region or river in Latin America, which was in turn named after a culture of female warriors originating from, according to Herodotus, Ukraine.
It’s not known whether Ukraine had a position on the objection and Herodotus was unavailable for comment.

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Comments (10)

  1. Not-Com Tom says:

    I wonder how Amazon will react should they get shut out completely from all gTLDs if closed generics are ultimately ruled out. Could be some backlash.

  2. Adam says:

    Ironic that the new gTLD process favours brands with unique brand names as opposed to exact-match names like Amazon. is actually one of the few brands where I thought their own brand gTLD would be extremely effective in marketing. e.g. want to compare the prices of dvd players? Visit or etc.
    I can’t see Amazon backing down from this, I imagine they’ll do whatever they have to in order to get the .amazon domain.

    • John Berryhill says:

      “I can’t see Amazon backing down from this, I imagine they’ll do whatever they have to in order to get the .amazon domain.”
      The way we used to resolve this sort of problem was by having the US invade whatever Latin American country was causing the problem. $100 cash prize for the first cryptic Teddy Roosevelt reference during the Open Forum.

  3. Ms Domainer says:

    Just so you know: I linked to this post on my Brands Z site, in “Selecting a Powerful Company or Brand Name.”
    I had a feeling this would happen with the generic TLDs. By allocating generics to powerful companies, it’s almost like selling off dictionary words to the highest bidder.
    It’s creepy.

  4. John Berryhill says:

    The IP folks lobbied the heck out of the GAC throughout the AGB process, and the GAC delivered. Hell hath no fury like a lover scorned.

  5. ChuckWagen says:

    The more level playing field claim aka hype for .brand was just a charade.

  6. John Berryhill says:

    Thank you, Kevin. I never quite understood the reference to “Amazon” as a female warrior savage, and assumed it was simply to a mythic group of the Amazon river basin itself.
    From Herodotus, all the way to whomever was the lyricist for the Commodores signature hit, Brick House:
    “She’s a brick-house. The lady’s stacked and that’s a fact, ain’t holding nothing back. She’s a brick-house. She’s the one, the only one, who’s built like a amazon”
    Okay, now we call it even, yes?

    • John Berryhill says:

      I should further mention that “Brick-House” is something of a bowdlerized expression which I’m not sure is common to the British Isles, and is somewhat out of currency in the US, from which a monosyllabic word has been omitted between “brick” and “house”. However, wherever fine beverages are sold, there is a syncopated beat in the song during which ad hoc restorations of that syllable are frequently made by the patrons.

  7. Not-Com Tom says:

    Nobody in South America calls the big river ‘Amazon’. ‘Amazon’ is an English word, mostly referring to the giant internet retailer.
    ‘Amazonia’ is the local name for the river and region.
    .AMAZON should be approved.

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